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View Diary: Just Released from Gitmo on Hudson (40 comments)

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  •  What is wrong with you people?! (4.00)
    You don't have to have a permit to walk on a sidewalk with a sign.  When did we have to get a permit to excercise any First Amendment rights?

    The NYPD aren't getting permits to stand outside the Mayor's house every night and yell, sometimes at 1:30 AM.

    See:

    http://bloggy.com/mt/archives/004280.html

    •  I think you're oversimplifying (3.50)
      a) I'm not trying to be a troll. I support peaceful, intelligent civil obedience, and I'm going to a non-permitted protest in Union Square tonight and could get arrested myself. Better write that legal aid number on my arm again . . .

      b) My understanding is that the police have arrested some people who weren't even involved in demonstrations, let alone breaking any rules.

      It also sounds as if the Pier 57 detention conditions were pretty awful.

      But it also sounds as if folks are complaining about arrests at protests that really were illegal.

      Example: if you were peacefully protesting in Union Square and got arrested, f the police, or Bloomberg, or whoever.

      If you were peacefully, quietly protesting on the steps of the New York Public Library without a permit, and you were supposed to have a permit, then, under normal circumstances, I'd say the police ought to leave you alone. Under current conditions, when the police sincerely believe that a huge riot could break out or a backpack nuclear bomb could explode anywhere, at any time, then I think it's understandable that the police might enforce the rules more vigorously than normal.

      From our point of view, they're limiting important dissent against a looming dictatorship.

      From Bloomberg's point of view, he's protecting the Republicans, the city and the protesters against a serious breakdown in public order.

      Also: for all I know, you live near Ground Zero and have nerves of steel. But a lot of people in and around New York still have some WTC post-traumatic syndrome and are freaked out by any threat of breakdown in public order. I lived within smelling distance of the WTC ruins. I remember watching a documentary about IMF protesters right after the WTC attacks and, despite sympathizing with some of their arguments, really hating them for being disorderly. Maybe some politicians and police officers in New York still carry that reaction around with them, and that's affecting how the enforce the law.

      •  Follow-up (none)
        I got answers to my questions and realize now that the NYPD violated the rights of the people that they penned at Pier 57 in a really outrageous way.

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